Christmas special takeaway: superchef to the rescue in Cumbria

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With Christmas approaching fast, food shopping to do and guests at the dinner table to confirm, it can all get a little bit too much. Especially since when, thanks to proliferating cooking blogs and TV programs, every time we cook somehow we feel under exam.

Well, some people may just chose not to take the pressure, or rather leave it to someone else.

How about just enjoying family and friends at the festive reunion and the good things about good food- without having to make it yourself? And, oh, the joy of not having to worry about the pile of dirty pots and pans stuck high to the kitchen ceiling!

What we really need is a quality takeaway service on Christmas day. Imagine: a chef cooking for you and your guests on the day, saving you the hassle of shopping, cooking and washing up.

Well, if you live in the anywhere around Ulverston, Cumbria, you may be pleased to know that the dream has come true, thanks to brave chef Craig Sherrington from Lancaster.

37 yeas old Sherrington, a former student at Lancaster and Morecambe College, is master chef at the General Burgoyne, a pub in Great Urswick that is a top destination for food lovers, appearing in both the Good Food Guide and the AA Pub Guide 2014.

Mr Sherrington pioneered the idea of special Christmas takeaway services after a special request from a regular customer a couple of years ago. The service went on every year since then, but was kept low profile and small scale.

This year, however, the General Burgoyne festive takeaway service will be a much larger operation, with the pub open from noon to 4pm, and the opportunity for up to 70 customers to pick up their lush takeways for only £15.

Locals in Urswick and many others within driving distance are expected to flock to the pub, with the only requirement of bringing their own plates and take meals home covered in tin foil.

As chef Sherrington explains: “We didn’t set out to do this by design. One of our regulars was having a lot of his family over for Christmas a couple of years ago and he asked us if we’d cook it.

“People heard about it and we started getting requests, we did a few last year, just for people who asked us. This year we’re having to put a limit of 70 on the number we do, otherwise it will get out of hand.”

It seems like a fantastic idea that will provide an unvaluable service to many, and surely prove a great business move to be emulated elsewhere. Plus, the idea of having your local pub open for few hours on Christmas day makes the whole thing even sweeter.

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